Play Now Login Create Account
illyriad
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - The Chronicles of Illyriad
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Register Register  Login Login

Topic ClosedThe Chronicles of Illyriad

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
Aeonflux View Drop Down
New Poster
New Poster
Avatar

Joined: 02 Nov 2012
Location: Crockett, CA
Status: Offline
Points: 13
Direct Link To This Post Topic: The Chronicles of Illyriad
    Posted: 14 Dec 2012 at 03:41

"It has been several months since The Ceremony was performed in order to move the City of Irad to the new location, and since that time Aeonflux's countenance has fallen dramatically", the steward related to Maccam, one of Aeonflux's closest friends in the land of Illyriad. "He has secluded himself in his chambers, he barely eats, he does not sleep. He says when he closes his eyes...", the steward paused for a moment, unsure of how to phrase the next part of the statement, "he...he says he can only see the eyes of the prophet, and it terrifies him. We cannot understand it, no medicine seems to bring him comfort, no ward runes will drive away this evil spirit that haunts him." The steward was clearly frustrated and becoming agitated. Deep lines carved their way across his forehead, and his eyes were seated in dark concentric rings that extended out and down toward his cheekbones. He looked tired, Maccam thought, in fact, everyone in the whole town looks to be about fifty years older than their chronological age. The wailing from the mourners could be heard for miles outside of the town; the women screaming for their children, men moaning and chanting, the dark priests of the GM Pantheon banging their tambourines, drums and symbols trying to entice the attention of the Grand Architects of Illyriad. It was a damned mess, a sound and sight that would drive anyone mad.

As a result of the massive deaths from the ceremony and the failure of the crops since then, the civilian backlash against the political establishment was vicious and swift. Several Lords had been assassinated with poison, or an arrow through the heart. They were the lucky ones. Some had been kidnapped and their bodies mutilated, dragged through the streets like rag dolls then strung up on the grand ancient tree in the center of the castle grounds. It was the ultimate desecration. Maccam could barely contain his disgust. They traveled slowly through the filthy and neglected city streets as the contingent of the King's Guard scanned for any potential threat against the visiting diplomat. The city had fallen into disrepair and the sun never seemed to quite break through the cloud that hovered over the territory. The fog that descended upon the city on that dreadful day lifted from ground level up into the sky, never allowing any light in. Plants failed to thrive, color drained from the face of once luscious foliage. Trees no longer sprouted leaves and no longer bore fruit. The land was barren. It is a mystery that none could fathom, but somehow the ceremony bound the people and the land, because the women, like the land were no longer fruitful. They could no longer bear children, and those who did conceive gave birth to still born abominations. It would have been better to never have conceived at all. The land became hard and difficult to till, and certainly most difficult to dig for graves. It was decided that the bodies would be burned, as the stench of rotting meat from the scattered pyramids of stacked dead about the city permeated the air. The priests of the GM pantheon created a funeral pyre that never seemed to be quenched, as it always had plenty of fodder to burn through.

As the diplomatic contingent passed the funeral pyre, they fell silent. On the surface it seemed like a silence out of respect, but really it was out of horror. It was a stunning silence for a stunning scene. Some priests chanted, hoods covering their down cast heads, as others were responsible for administering the rites of passage and tossing the bodies onto the fire. There was a commotion and Maccam looked round about and saw a priest struggling with a woman holding a little bundle. He was trying to grab it from her, but she kept resisting. Other priests came over to assist and grabbed her arms, and the first priest was able to wrestle the bundle away from her. He could not be sure, as most of their bodies were covered, but for a moment it looked like the hand of a monster. The fact that no one could see the faces of the priests only added to the unease of the population.

"Noooooo!" the woman shrieked, struggling against the men holding her back. She tried to reach out again, but the arms were a bulwark against her. "Please, please, please," she pleaded, "I will love him, and take care of him." Maccam did not understand why she was saying that, but as he looked back at the priest holding the bundle of cloth, a flap that had come un-tucked from the scuffle revealed the form of a baby with birth matter still caked to his small face. He had a misshapen head and mouth. There was only one eye and the other was missing completely and was just a sunken, swollen meat hole. The priest took the bundle and threw the baby onto the fire and when it's soft flesh hit the red embers, a scream pierced the air. IT WAS ALIVE!

"My GODS!" Maccam screamed, "The CHILD IS ALIVE!” The steward hung his head low and turned away, unable to respond, unable to look Maccam in the eyes in fear that it would reveal the callousness of his heart; he no longer could feel empathy because in fact, he had seen this scene too often and had grown accustomed to it. They all had, the only ones screaming were the mother and child. The priests pulled her back, her hand outstretched toward the inferno as the child was moving in vain attempts to escape the flames. The screams finally ceased but the child's mouth was still wide open as flames worked their way through the open orifice, transforming the peeling skin into a charred mass. Maccam thoughts raced towards his own young son, and his heart broke and tears slide down his regal face.

"What are they doing, where are they taking her!?" Maccam demanded.

"My Lord," the steward spoke down to the ground, still unable to look Maccam in the eyes, "She is a breeder, and they are taking her back to the breeding grounds."

"The breeding grounds? What are you talking about man!?"

He hesitated, because the presence of a new soul provoked the stewards conscious and the gravity of the situation was hitting him again, seeing through the eyes of one not accustomed to the reality of their situation. "My Lord, you must understand, we take no pleasure in what we have to do to survive. But since the exodus and tenrail spell, our population has suffered and needs to be...replenished. Most children conceived are terribly deformed and would never survive. Because of the population loss coupled with the increasing number of birth defect, we do not have the luxury of allowing the population to grow through the means of...natural affection."

"I cannot believe that Aeon would allow this! Is this by his own mandate!?" The steward was silent. Maccam could not perceive if this was an affirmation, or a negation. "Steward!? Answer me!"

"The Regent has been absent, a recluse. He rarely emerges from his chambers and never lets anyone in. He barely speaks and will only take a little food. We were hoping that you could speak with him; he always spoke fondly of you. We are lost without-" 

"Steward," Maccam spat, interrupting him in mid-sentence, "Answer me! WHO commanded this plan of action!?"

The steward’s face jerked as if being physically slapped at the fierceness of Maccam's presence. "The dark priests who performed the Ceremony, my Lord. Since the ceremony and the death of the prophet Ah'briem, The Regent has been despondent and in fact has been usurped due to his inaction. Please my Lord, please, you are our last hope."

"Get me out of here," he growled. "Let me do what I came to do so I can get out of this Gods forsaken place." He kicked the side of his stead, let out a command and the horse galloped forward, past the security contingent and toward the castle, but he could not escape the smell, the wailing and the chanting priests. The horror of this place would not be easily forgotten, and Maccam doubted he could ever eat game again once he returned to the security of his own lands, or how he would wash away the smell of burning flesh off his skin. He pledged to himself when he returned to his own home he would hold his wife and son tight, and never, ever let go. 

____________________


Aeonflux looked out over his land, once lush with promise, now barren and grey. The trees looked like twisted imps, dancing in mad contortions, their skinny arms reaching out to the sky in vain hopes of reaching the sun. The black smoke stacks generated and sustained by the burning bodies were the only contrast to the grey canopy.  He saw the diplomatic procession enter the city gates and spied the horror and rage on his friend’s face. What have I done! The pain punched his stomach again and he doubled over and vomited blood onto the bear-skin rug. I am surrounded by death, it's shadow reaching over me like the black wings of a crow. HA! Crows make me sick! Aeon reached up to his ancient oak desk and lifted himself up and used the object to prop his emaciated body up. He looked down at the message he received from a Crow member, and rage fueled his body. "Please remove your Troops from my Doorstep!" the header read. Aeonflux managed a chuckle, they had scouted the area and lost many men in order to capture salts from an elemental they hunted down. Not only did they not get the salts due to a miscommunication with the skinners, but to add insult to injury, he gets a message from a sovereign many times stronger than he, demanding that the troops leave the area, even though it is unincorporated territory. The presence of the troops there was...'unacceptable.' Aeonflux groaned as the pain made itself known again. So much for the Crow Alliance spirit of generosity and graciousness. They are LIARS! In a rage he crumbled up the message and tossed it aside. The game is over, I do not have the strength to continue.

He thought back to that moment, when the prophet came through the protective barrier the day of The Ceremony. His hands and forehead were covered in blood. He looked like a lamb lead to the slaughter himself. His eyes! OH HIS EYES! Aeonflux groaned again. Those eyes haunted him in his sleep and even in his waking moments, they were forever tormenting him with one word, "GUILTY!" The prophet raised his bloody finger and pointed directly at him and then he bent down and started writing something on the floor. The High Priest hissed at Ah'briem as the Tenrail spell continued on. Oh Gods that drone...even now after all these months, Aeon could still hear it. What have I done?

Everything happened very fast, but as soon as Ah'briem finished writing a dark priest emerged from the shadows, grabbed Ah'briems hair, pulled back exposing his throat and slide a blade across from one ear to the other. With the tension of the skin and cartilage undone, the prophet's head came back to an unnatural angle as blood spurt from the second mouth. His body lay crumpled on the floor and the river of blood flowed towards the protective barrier. As soon as it touched the lightly glowing, effervescent bubble, it shattered and fell down like lightly colored glass. It made a most delightful sound, like tinkling bells, but then something terrifying happened. The Drone of the High Priest's ceremony extended out from the tower and engulfed the land wrecking devastation as creation was turned inside out. When it was complete, the city had been moved, but the fog never lifted fully. The land was cursed. He was cursed.

He brought in experts in ancient languages, but no one could decipher what The Prophet had written on the floor. Finally an adept of Ah'briem was summoned to the castle despite the uproar it caused. Already worried about their political standing many Lords spun the situation around on the worshipers of El'oheim and any mention of his name or doctrines were outlawed under the penalty of death. It was signed and sealed by the ring. It unleashed another wave of blood upon the city, as someone needed to pay, and since the worshipers of El'oheim seemed unscathed by the incident some suggested that they were the cause of the problem. The High Priest fueled this suspicion and things spiraled out of control. More blood flowed. The adept had to be brought in through the security tunnels under the castle grounds by only the most trusted officers of the guard.

The adept entered the room, he was a remarkably young man. He looked nervous, but certain of his path. He did not have fear.

"Son, please come here," Aeon beckoned the adept, "No harm will come to you here."

"I do not fear death," he replied. "It is you, who should fear death."

Aeon managed a smile, but his anger belied his magnanimous affect. "Why should I fear death? When we die, we just go back into the ground, or become dust from the fires and spread out over the land giving nourishment to nature. Death is life."

"This is true in part, my regent," the adept replied with remarkable respect. "The body, being organic, does upon death revert to its natural, material components and becomes food for nature. But your soul lives on."

"Soul!?" Aeon laughed. The adept looked up briefly, smiled slightly, and then looked back down. Silence permeated the room. "What can you tell me about this," Aeon asked breaking the thick pause, pointing down at the text written in blood in the floor of his chambers. 

The adept walked around the script, paused for a moment, then said, "This is the writing that was written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. This is the interpretation of the thing: MENE; El'oheim has numbered your kingdom, and finished it. TEKEL; You are weighed in the balances, and are found wanting. PERES; Your kingdom is divided, and given to others."

Aeon's heart froze, his blood went cold. Could it be?

"Regent", the adept continued, "You are guilty. There is a natural law, which mages, engineers and architects understand very well. They are masters of this law, and use it to their advantage, advancing their own personal agendas for conquest, self-glorification and gain. But there is another law that operates within the harmonics of natural law, which is the metaphysical law. The law of El'oheim."

"How can a fiction have a law," Aeon scoffed.

"It is the same law of metaphysical mechanics by which you are able to 'think', and 'know'. Understanding is not mechanics, in the physical sense, because it is ever present and timeless. It cannot be weighed or measured, so it is always missed, or taken for granted by the grand masters of this realm. You 'knew' that you were guilty when you came out of exile to take on this role. After all you named your cities after the enemies of El'oheim, the mighty hunters who stand in the face of God and provoke judgment: Enoch, Irad and Mehujael, the sons of disobedience. I know your name, Aeonflux, and to know a name is to know the thing. I know your real name, and I know who you really are."

Aeon stared down the young adept.

"You are Cain. You are a murder of your brethren. You built cities for your glory and subjugated the people under you to wage war and pervert the natural order for your own gain. This is the righteous judgment, and why you have been found wanting. You KNEW what you were doing, you were not ignorant of your situation. You chose to enter into this world to work inequities, and now the repercussions are working their way through your kingdom, eating away at the foundation of your wealth, which was a gift given to all freely by the creator. You have surrounded yourself with the priest of Chaos who will be cast down into a pit of their own making, forever suffering in the torment of their own creations. They are carrion feeders, and only exist to see creation and beauty marred and deformed."

The adepts eyes lit up and it seemed as though a wind rushed through the chambers and filled the young man, his voice and demeanor changed as if El'oheim himself were speaking directly to Aeon, and he was filled with terror.

"There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth! Mother's will cry out for their children! The Land will never bear fruit for you again, you are cursed, Son of Cain."

The spirit that filled the young man receded and the imposition of the voice gave way to the space around them and the room fell silent. The young man bowed his head and tears fell from his eyes. Aeon felt nothing, no remorse, nor sorrow. Only fear and loathing. His heart became hard, his eyes fierce and his fists clenched, he spat, "Get....out...!" 

The young adept bowed before him, low and to the ground. The humbleness of this act filled Aeonflux with even more rage and anger! It was a visceral fire! Before he knew what he was doing, Aeonflux screamed and brought down his sword on the man's neck, severing the head from its body. That was a line that shouldn't have been crossed, and now his fate was sealed. He murdered an innocent man. The guards came into the room, and were aghast at what they saw. The Regent was soaked in blood, his hair matted with gore. His eyes were fire and rage, they couldn't be sure, but it looked as though his hands were talons. He looked other worldly, like a creature escaped from the abyss. They ran out of the room, fearful for their own lives and fled the castle. 

From the day on, Aeon was alone in his castle and alone with his thoughts which turned against him. He saw creatures reaching out of the shadows trying to pull him in, anyone who came to him looked like a monster with chattering teeth and the speech, which was intelligible to others, was translated into horrible laughter in his mind. All joy was removed from his spirit, gold and gems lost their luster. The world that once shone bright and full of promise had become a dull throb. Even food tasted like bland matter. He was the true embodiment of what it means to be the living dead. Animated, able to walk, talk and move, but soulless, which he slaughtered the moment the blade broke the skin of the young adept's neck.

It was over. The game is over. With great labor, Aeon made his way to the chair by the large window that had a marvelous view of the ocean cliffs. Even though the scene would take anyone's breath away, it too was meaningless matter now. He turned around to his desk, took out his journal and made one last entry. After it was finished, he place the journal on the desk, face open. He pulled out a dagger from the drawer and with an uninterested expression on his face, drove it deep into his wrist. Funny, it doesn't hurt, he thought, even this has lost any meaning. I am dead, an empty temple, a sepulcher. With his bloody hand, he took the blade and gripped it tight even though he had severed most of his tendons, and drove it deep into the other wrist and slit up. There...it is done, he thought as the blade dropped from his hand clanging on the stone floor. It is time to wake up. This is just a dream, and I am the dreamer. There is no heaven and there is no hell. When the darkness comes, I will wake up somewhere else, as someone else in a different land and a different time.

The blood that was at first warming his lap, became cooler and cooler. His whole body was going cold, and it was more difficult to focus and breathe. There was a sense of peace that came over him as the last bit of life force oozed from his wounds. This is it, he thought, it is time to wake up. And then without fanfare, the light became dim and the shadows over took him. He was dead, but he was still thinking. How can this be!? He saw a face in the shadows, heard laughing and hissing. Talons started grabbing at him, pulling at his skin. He felt pain. This is not right! Something is wrong! Hands grabbed his feet and his legs and pulled him down. He tried to scream, but many more hands came out of the darkness and covered his face. He knew only fear and pain as the talons ripped merciless at his skin, which reappeared after each chunk of flesh was taken away, allowing for an unending torment. He began weeping and gnashing his teeth. He was alone. In the dark. Forever.

 

_____________________________

 

Maccam enter the chamber room and saw his friend’s lifeless body at his administrative desk. His eyes staring, skin cold and white as marble. He turned away as he closed his eyes in shock and pain. He was too late. The steward let out a blood curdling scream and fell on the ground. It was over, the kingdom is lost and they were refugees. Maccam made his way to the desk and found The Chronicles of Illyriad and saw that it was dated for today, Deziember 13th, 4th Quarter of the Winter Solstice. He picked up the book and saw that the entry was addressed to him personally. He read:

Maccam, my friend. Have you ever heard of the madman who on a bright morning lighted a lantern and ran to the market-place calling out unceasingly: "I seek God! I seek God!" As there were many people standing about who did not believe in God, he caused a great deal of amusement. Why? is he lost? said one. Has he strayed away like a child? said another. Or does he keep himself hidden? Is he afraid of us? Has he taken a sea voyage? Has he emigrated? - the people cried out laughingly, all in a hubbub.

The insane man jumped into their midst and transfixed them with his glances. "Where is God gone?" he called out. "I mean to tell you! We have killed him, you and I! We are all his murderers! But how have we done it? How were we able to drink up the sea? Who gave us the sponge to wipe away the whole horizon? What did we do when we loosened this earth from its sun? Whither does it now move? Whither do we move? Away from all suns? Do we not dash on unceasingly? Backwards, sideways, forwards, in all directions? Is there still an above and below? Do we not stray, as through infinite nothingness? Does not empty space breathe upon us? Has it not become colder? Does not night come on continually, darker and darker? Shall we not have to light lanterns in the morning? Do we not hear the noise of the grave-diggers who are burying God? Do we not smell the divine putrefaction? - for even Gods putrify! God is dead! God remains dead! And we have killed him!

How shall we console ourselves, the most murderous of all murderers? The holiest and the mightiest that the world has hitherto possessed, has bled to death under our knife - who will wipe the blood from us? With what water could we cleanse ourselves? What lustrums, what sacred games shall we have to devise? Is not the magnitude of this deed too great for us? Shall we not ourselves have to become Gods, merely to seem worthy of it? There never was a greater event - and on account of it, all who are born after us belong to a higher history than any history hitherto!" Here the madman was silent and looked again at his hearers; they also were silent and looked at him in surprise.

At last he threw his lantern on the ground, so that it broke in pieces and was extinguished. "I come too early," he then said. "I am not yet at the right time. This prodigious event is still on its way, and is traveling - it has not yet reached men's ears. Lightning and thunder need time, the light of the stars needs time, deeds need time, even after they are done, to be seen and heard. This deed is as yet further from them than the furthest star - and yet they have done it themselves!" It is further stated that the madman made his way into different temples on the same day, and there intoned his Requiem aeternam deo. When led out and called to account, he always gave the reply: "What are these temples now, if they are not the tombs and monuments of God?" 

Brother, we now live in the time prescribed by the madman. What then do we do? We play games that are facsimiles of a harsh reality, a time where we have unanchored ourselves to any meaning and so everything is meaningless, even the question itself. It is said that our bodies are the temples of the Living God, so if we have killed God, have we killed ourselves? I suppose that itself is meaningless as well. I am tired of the game, and have decided that it is over. I wish you well, peace and blessings.

-  Aeon

Maccam took the book off the desk and put it in his satchel. He reached over and pulled the lids of the eyes down. He couldn't stand their blank, lifeless stare any longer. He walked towards the chamber doors and looked down at the sobbing mass and said, "Take heart, we will make a place for you and the citizens of the cities." The steward kissed the feet of his new benefactor. After a time Maccam was able to unhook his leg and made his way towards his steed. He could not wait to make his way back toward home and away from this nightmare. There were many things to consider, some things perhaps taken for granted that needed to be re-examined. As he made his way out of the city, he looked up and saw a ray of sun poking through the thick cloud that had tormented this land. The ray hit his face and warmed his skin. He looked down and saw a sprout of green poking out of the hard, dry land. He stopped to consider the magnitude of such a small thing.  Out of the countless blades of green carpeting the vast lands of Illyriad, this one single blade spoke a resounding message: There is hope. And with that thought, he disappeared through the thick brush at the edge of the enchanted forest and held fast to the vision of his wife and son illuminated by the Sun, the light of creation. 


lyrics:

Can't stand this cage cos there's no place to fly to.
My future's been cancelled, my past's just a lie.
You say, ''Do it alone'', and I'm trying like hell to rise up from the ashes, be somebody else.
I shout my rage from the rooftops, burn down this shell, but you smile from the gallery, ringing a bell.
And I jump, and I've jumped but the bars are still there.
I know deep inside me you don't really care.
You say, ''Sleep baby. Sleep. It's all just a dream.''



Edited by Aeonflux - 14 Dec 2012 at 04:20
Back to Top
Ossian View Drop Down
Forum Warrior
Forum Warrior
Avatar

Joined: 12 Oct 2010
Status: Offline
Points: 456
Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Dec 2012 at 13:21

Very well written so far. Is it possible to link the story to the narrative of Illyriad ? Smile

Back to Top
Aeonflux View Drop Down
New Poster
New Poster
Avatar

Joined: 02 Nov 2012
Location: Crockett, CA
Status: Offline
Points: 13
Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Dec 2012 at 23:30

The Ceremony



Ah'breim emerged from the shelter of his home and cautiously made his way through the forest onto the empty road that led to The City of Irad, capital of the heretic Aeonflux. He knew it was unsafe for him to be out on such a day, but he had the assurance of El'oheim, the most divine Thought, that he would be able to traverse the distance to the castle lands without harm; and that assurance was enough for him. Whether it was by natural or supernatural abilities that El'oheim operated, he could not say. Ah'breim reasoned that the process was an amalgam between natural forces, meaning dealing only with the material foundation of existence, and supernatural forces, or the space of pure conception. Ah'breim teaches at length about this oscillating dynamic in the first lesson on the 'meta-natural' attribute of El'oheim. It is through an imposition of his personality and being that he works his wonders. After all if one has the proper data, one could navigate the murky waters of time, projecting courses of the natural and only order of things from the beginning. The Divine Thought was present at the beginning, bearing witness to the exteriorization of a thought, and that thought being of a beginning. El'oheim had exercised his foreknowledge with expert precision in the past, leading Ah'breim out of the cradle of the dark forest, which was once a beautiful garden ruined by a storm. That storm was the perversion of order and the emergence of 'disordered thought'.

The disorder was seductive, whispering in the ears of the progenitors, "know me..", and some yielded and consumed the fruit of disorder, thereby knowing it. Yet, they could not contain it. The disorder ravaged their minds and shattered their conscious, which reflected in perfect order The Most Divine Thought. From the moment their minds shattered in order to 'know', they could only reflect a fractured image. They became dis-order. They became dis-eased. They were the inversion of everything that was pure. Where there was only light, they became the darkness. Where there was serenity and tranquility, they became fear and rage. Though outwardly they appear to be in the image of the progenitors, inwardly they are snakes and vipers. 

 

They took their knowledge and taught it to wayward elves inducted into their ranks. The network of rogues are now a secret priest class who work their craft for misguided and myopic regents and rulers who seek an advantage but think nothing of the consequences of their actions. They are ignorant of the fact that these priests wrestle the secrets from Creation, the most beautiful Mother, by rape. They ravage The Great Mother, tearing at her breasts like greedy and vicious children and drink her milk, willfully ignorant of her wails and weeping. This is the truth of what magic is, and why there is always a price. A very high price, as Justice must be satisfied.

In the cool of the day, after the midday sun began its slow descent, El'oheim visited Ah'breim and let him know that there was coming a day, a very dark day that would befall the people. The Regent was going to allow the priests to perform a ritual that would transport an entire city from one location to another. He could not believe it was true, even though he knew that this news was coming from Truth Itself. Ah'breim had to prepare the people. He was told how the people could survive the retribution of Justice. He spent the weeks and months teaching his adepts, then sent them out to the local communities to teach the general population. This was the most efficient way to disseminate the information. Now, after all this time, the day was upon them.

It started as a low hum, permeating the atmosphere of the town. The source was the Mage Tower, one of the highest points of the city scape; a foreboding node radiating a deep sense of disquiet. By chanting in specified patterns and tones, in conjunction with the alignment of planetary and celestial bodies, they could in effect move matter from one location to another. The vibrational tone was not necessarily massive in sound and scope, but rather, worked in a subtle way. The continual low drone would eventually break down matter, rearranging the fabric of space and allow them to alter reality. They planned to move The City of Irad to a faraway land, to a mountainous coast. The resources of the jungle and seas would bring plenty of wheat and gold worthy of a capital. However, those who were not properly insulated from the chant would not survive the rearrangement, but would suffer mental degradation leading to a complete and irreversible psychosis and then eventual death. It is the most horrendous of deaths, as one is wracked with pain and knows only fear hours before the body collapses and the spirit is over taken. The only way to be protected from this would be to mask your space with the ultimate expression of disorder: death. Anyone who wanted to survive this coming onslaught would have to cover their door posts with the blood of a lamb. There were those who believed, and there were those who didn't believe.

As Ah'breim made his way toward the town, he could see shanties marked with blood and his heart was relieved at the number of them and was thankful for the many who would survive the dark ceremony. As he passed, those who were brave enough, looked out of their windows and stared at him with a mixture of amazement and fear. After all, there wasn't a soul on the muddy streets. No one dared emerge from their protective bubble. The sky turned dark as the sun was covered by a thick fog. One could hardly see out of their window, Ah'breim must have appeared as ghost to them. Like a specter that appears for a moment in the corner of your eye, but as soon as you stare at it, it fades into the white velvet cloud as swirls and wisps of smoke sweep away any trace of his having been there. 

"AAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!!" a voice shrieked from the shadows. Ah'breim stopped, dead still. The only thing moving was the steady, but earnest beat of his heart juxtaposed against the throbbing and persistent drone of the ceremony.

"NNNNNNNAaaaaaaaaaawww!!" came the howl, he could feel the hot breath of the animal near his old, pointy ears. Instinctively he reached his arms out behind him as he angled his torso down. His hands clamped onto what felt like a skull, his fingers gripped a jaw and then he pulled down using the weight of his body to hurl the object over his shoulder and a few feet onto the ground in front of him. Taking advantage of the situation, Ah'breim quickly took use of the high ground and swooped his leg out and kicked down at the same moment. In what would have appeared to be a completely fluid action, the attacker was thrown and then as he fell to the ground was locked under the down swinging leg of the patient warrior.

"Please...pa-pha..leease" the voice gurgled, his throat choked by the tips of Ah'breims toes. The mass began to weep, and in pity, he released the grip of his foot just enough to allow the predator breath. 

"Make it stop..just make it stop", the adolescent wept. "The PAAAaaaaiiaiiiiinnn! IT Huuuurtsss!", he howled again, "The chanting, make it stop, please JUST. MAKE. IT. STOOOOP!

His hands gripped aimlessly, confused as to whether to cover his ears or try to work the rock solid obstruction off his throat. His face winced in pain, terror and agony. Animal cries and guttural utterances emanated from the contorted mouth, as a single tear rolled down his cheek. His mind was ravaged by the music, most especially the Voice of the High priest, chanting backwards in the forbidden tongue. Ah'breim was protected by the lightly glowing spot of lambs blood on his forehead, but this poor soul was being torn asunder. In rage and pity, Ah'briem quickly rolled his foot forward over the young man's throat and then pulled back hard as he pressed the other into the man's neck; snapping the bone. The man's eyes shot open the instant the crack of the bone reverberated against the dense fog back into his own ears. The bulging eyes spoke a multitude of things; regret, shock, relief. But the one that broke Ah'breim's heart was the word spoken silently as the light receded from the coral like iris of the young man's eyes, "Mommy". 

There was one last, long exhale and then he was gone.

This was one of the poor souls who did not believe and did not prepare. There was plenty of forewarning and planning. There was even enough for the poor who could not afford their own lamb. The community rallied together, and any who wanted, could have been saved. Though few in number, there were those who thought their own knowledge of magic could protect them, but would realize too late the gravity of the situation as Magic Mountain spells are rarely practiced in the land of Illyriad. Ah'briem quieted the flush of anger that filled his cheeks, and instead said a quick prayer for the young man, and continued his way toward the source of the spiritual cesspool; The mage tower.

There were no guards out, so he made his way to the castle gates with ease, but the horrors he saw along the way brought him to an uncontrollable, inconsolable sobbing. Being closer to the source of the ceremony had a more intense effect on its victims, and the streets leading to the city center were strewn bodies with contorted, mocking faces. Like shadows cast by foot prints on the beach illuminated by a mid-night moon, the bodies made a wall of faces screaming silently from the Abuso. Ah'breim looked straight on towards his end goal, keeping his eyes focused on the straight and narrow objective. He had to deliver a message to the Regent. He made his way to the mage tower gates and entered without resistance. He walked into the great hall that would normally be bustling with activity and life, but was now empty and barren. It felt cold. As he moved closer to the source the sound was getting louder and more pronounced. He could not be sure, but it looked as though the walls were breathing. It must have been an illusion produced by the phasing effect of the spell. Matter was literally boiling in and out as it became a more malleable liquid type substance.

Instinctively he knew that he must put his hand on the large door leading into another subsection of chambers. This was where the most contorted space was located, as it was a raging boil of matter extending out towards his hand. For a moment Ah'breim felt a twinge of fear, but he put the palm of his hand on the churning mass. It felt like he immersed it into a warm jelly. His hand was passing right through the wood of the door. The hand was coated with the blood of the lambs he sacrificed for the people who choose life. A light emerged from  underneath his hand, and it grew larger and larger. Ah'breim closed his eyes and moved forward, hand extended into the light. And as quickly as it came, it was gone. He was now on the other side of light.



Edited by Aeonflux - 06 Dec 2012 at 04:02
Back to Top
Aeonflux View Drop Down
New Poster
New Poster
Avatar

Joined: 02 Nov 2012
Location: Crockett, CA
Status: Offline
Points: 13
Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Nov 2012 at 22:23
The 31st of Dozan, Solar Quarter of the Autumn Equinox



The past few months have been a trying time: to balance the right of rule and the wisdom of ruling is much more difficult in practice than it is in theory. As my settlement grew it became increasingly clear that it was time to institute an official government. The proxy governor system was already beginning to collapse under the weight of the explosive population growth. There was an alarming display of discontent among the workers of the iron mines due to a collapse and lack of a prepared response. I was just as outraged as the towns people, more so at myself than anyone else. I am regent, a direct descendant of The Duke of House Kerioth. 

I had given too much power to a civilian government that wanted to manage itself, but in time became corrupted by infighting and embezzlement, making promises but building roads to nowhere. It is never wise to exercise too much power over people, as they feel that it constricts their freedom, but sometimes it is necessary to act, given that I in fact own all the lands the people work. I have no need of gold in the same manner as those who fall to temptation and go the way of corruption, since I own the earth the gold is mined from. My interests serve the people over the long term; virtual immortality gives one a very long perspective, not necessarily the immediate interests of a passing generation. As much as it pained me to do, I abolished the civilian government and created a council of Lords to whom I have given land to govern. Each Lord would be responsible for ensuring the interests of the people over whom I have given them authority, in that they rule by-proxy. Each Lord would would respect the laws created by representatives of the people, whom can hold no other occupation for the duration of their terms, however many they choose to pursue, but would live and hold session in the outer court of my castle lands. All proposed laws must be ratified by vote, then must be signed by the Lord over their province, and then ultimately sealed in wax with my signet ring, to show that even I myself shall abide by that law, should it pertain to me.

 
There are rarely times when I will publically request to speak at the house of representatives to announce my intentions and feelings toward a certain piece of legislation dealing with matters of state. As regent I have sole authority, even if it is against the collective voices of my people. I made it known that I would not seal with my signet ring any document the house of representatives might approve in favor of renewing an expired treaty with SMA. I have been in direct contact with a delegation of representatives from Æsir, and have come to an agreement. I will be joining their alliance. Despite my warning, the wealthy bourgeois middle class, who envy me my wealth and wish to own all their eyes can see, swayed public opinion and in a show of defiance they called my bluff and approved the bill, which was ratified by a narrow majority of Lords. I refused to seal the document, and that was used as evidence that I was in fact not concerned with what my people wished and did not have their best interests in mind. Fear is a strong motivator, and now that the field of protection has lifted from my town, fear of theft or attack is most present. The world can be scary, but they must trust that I am making the right decision. 
 
To assuage the fearful, I have instead instituted a department of war, that would be responsible for growing a defensive army of spearmen to guard the outer most part of my territory. The merchants know that this will be good business for them, as they will no doubt be able to sell their wares and make even more profit selling not only to the crown, but also in the free market of greater Illyriad. However, for this concession they agreed that this army will only report and take my orders, and will swear an oath to violence in order to enforce the power of the signet ring. It is an unpopular decision and I am being called a tyrant by some youthful groups, but they will in time realize that this arrangement will bring stability and prosperity to all our peoples. Already I have dispatched and settled a new territory, with plans drawn up for more. 

This is a time of celebration! I have planned a series of public spectacles. My mages have been able to successfully open a rift in space and they uncovered a world of mysterious beings. We cannot yet venture over there, but the light and sounds that emanate from the rift are most amazing and soothing. When the sun sets, the mages will open the rift over the entire city, bathing it in light and sound. My people may be displeased now, but these displays of power remind them that what we are doing is for a higher purpose. A purpose higher than they can comprehend. This is the beginning of trust. 
 



Edited by Aeonflux - 11 Nov 2012 at 00:54
Back to Top
Ossian View Drop Down
Forum Warrior
Forum Warrior
Avatar

Joined: 12 Oct 2010
Status: Offline
Points: 456
Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Nov 2012 at 09:34
Nice to see and new and fresh approach to "The Chronicles of Illyriad". I hope that the future for you is indeed bright.
Back to Top
Aeonflux View Drop Down
New Poster
New Poster
Avatar

Joined: 02 Nov 2012
Location: Crockett, CA
Status: Offline
Points: 13
Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Nov 2012 at 00:24

The 24th of DozanSolar quarter Autumn



Today made for very a productive day. The market place is abuzz since the many caravans from distant lands have come and gone from this poor outpost. All came with goods, which I have allocated in order to increase production and stimulate the economy. In conjunction with the large subsidies given to me by diplomats of every race and culture of Illyriad, and lowering the tax rate down to zero, The City of Enoch has seen aggressive growth. The main thoroughfare, an unpaved mud patch really, is beginning to form into something exciting. I am starting to feel hopeful about this endeavor, which was doubtful in my mind when first tasked with ruling this land after having been in exile for over three centuries.  In that time the castle fell in ruin and the cross roads of the town had been retaken by nature. However, what has started out with vendor tents along  the main street leading to the castle gates are becoming more established. Many are building foundations for store fronts, and architects are drawing up plans for building designs.

I remember the day the first caravans arrived from Maccam and DTtrooper, coming out of the trees of the dark forest, traversing like Gods across the dusty road leading to my castle. They were arrayed with precious jewels and finely crafted armor that shone like stars under the midday Sun. Many of the peasants in the outer skirts fled in fear when they saw the long procession, because these lands are dangerous, and the simple ones do not know who is friend or foe. Everyone must assume foe; you survive longer that way. Over the months, hundreds of caravans have come here from major empires. Some have decided to leave a diplomat to represent their interests, which at this point serve mine; such is the spirit of graciousness that permeates the world of Illyriad. Some seek alliances, but mostly it is without political favor. They are by far the reason for the raise in population and bustling activity. It is a gilded age of peace and prosperity for all. There is in each leader, a sense of the connectedness of us all and a conscious awareness of an economic equilibrium; meaning it is in our best interests to cooperate. However, in the halls of power, secluded behind the council chamber doors there is talk of the increasing number of wars. I am assured protection, and the gifts they bring are the evidence of that good will.

Where wealth and power go, so do those who seek to serve and exploit it. The tavern has become a sort of meeting place for espionage and political intrigue. The tavern is the beating heart of my town, and so the institutions of power are being erected around it; the embassies and trading companies. It is the cabal for adventure seekers, as there is also an increasing need for scouts to help guide inept intellectuals who seek this or that particular gem for a new rune design the stars have shown them. There are also increasing requests for aid for individual subjects given to me by local mayors, who represent the interests of the population that live and work my land. I am able to comply because the outpost is becoming a bustling town. I am excited to see what this will become. The future is bright.



Edited by Aeonflux - 10 Nov 2012 at 23:37
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Forum Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 11.10
Copyright ©2001-2017 Web Wiz Ltd.